Over the past 15 years, eLearning has grown in leaps and bounds, maturing to position itself as a strategic asset of the modern learning organization. And it promises to continue expanding opportunities for people in the future, as the path of technological innovation is ongoing. Now, in the “Age of AI” we’re living in, the path appears to be leading us into exciting, uncharted territory.
For a decade or two already, eLearning and LMS in particular become the epicenters of benefits and rewards brought by new generations of technology; and are now set to remain as such for the following, due to the widespread implementation of generative AI and the current state of Large Language Models (LLMs).
The rise of AI
News about AI is everywhere at present, and the eLearning environment offers unique opportunities to understand the virtual participant that aren’t possible in a physical classroom. While AI can certainly be used to automate certain tasks in both types of environments, such as grading tests that have unambiguous answers, it can take several additional leaps when it comes to delivering learning online.
One important element to keep in mind when it comes to the role of AI in education is that it will support rather than replace human teachers. Because it will be able to automate many tasks, including answering question via chatbot, teachers will be freed up to give extra attention to learners who need it. AI is also likely to play a role in curriculum development and in delivering a more personalized curriculum. It will be able to determine what the learner needs by making use of the vast amount of data collected and analyzed based on learner behavior. It is likely that AI will deliver additional benefits and transform the online educational experience in ways that are only beginning to be explored.
Whether you’re participating in eLearning yourself or looking for a solution to train a team that you’re in charge of, it’s common for these types of courses to be lower in cost. While those that involve pursuing a degree may cost nearly as much or the same as in-person classes, you’ll still save on transportation. The savings can be particularly significant if you would otherwise have to uproot your life and move to another city or state to pursue the degree.
You can keep working while you’re getting a degree in this way, and if you currently have student loans from an earlier educational attempt, you might want to consider refinancing them. This can make it easier to pay off and may lower your monthly expenses. If you were attending a regular brick-and-mortar school full time, your earnings might be lower, and these debts might just keep on accumulating interest. For businesses and organizations that are using eLearning to train employees, there can be big savings in the fact that there is little or no cost in expanding a training module to accommodate larger numbers of workers. In addition, workers do not have to travel off site to complete their training, saving on transportation costs.
Grow your business
If you are a business owner, there are several specific ways in which digital education can help you grow your company. It makes onboarding easier and can allow you to do both that and train remote employees, widening the talent pool that you have to draw on. You can get feedback from your employees during the training or educational process, finding out what does and doesn’t work for them and what they need more of. While that kind of self-reporting is valuable, you can combine it with data about their behavior during learning sessions and figure out how to better deliver necessary information to them. Employees who receive personalized training and have opportunities to advance will stick around, and retention can be important in keeping a business healthy.
As far as traditional brick-and-mortar schools and other educational facilities have come in making themselves more accessible to students who have disabilities, digital education can expand that accessibility even more. Text to speech can help learners facing several challenges, including dyslexia and vision problems. Digital education also offers opportunities for students who struggle to learn in a traditional classroom environment or who face physical or emotional challenges that make it difficult to attend school.
One of the greatest advantages of eLearning is the flexibility it offers. Certainly, one element of that flexibility is that learning can happen asynchronously, but there are additional elements contributing to it as well. The widespread availability of online courses, many of them free, offers people an unprecedented opportunity to dabble in areas as varied as astrophysics, accounting, and philosophy. Whether an individual wants to dip into classical Greek, classic guitar or just read the classics, there is almost certainly a program available. The student does not have to be near a major learning center, an expert in the topic or planning on pursuing a degree in the topic to take advantage of the knowledge on offer.